At Close Range (1986)


Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB

USA, 1986.  Cinema ’85, Hemdale.  Story by , , Screenplay by Nicholas Kazan.  Cinematography by . Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  

Powerful drama that tells a dark tale while also addressing the lack of opportunities for America’s poor to escape their surroundings. grows up in the rural south with his brother (real-life brother ) and mother (real-life mother ), who has long since divorced their crime boss father (a terrifying Christopher Walken) and kept the boys safe from his milieu.

When Walken re-enters their life and wants to get to know his sons, the boys find the life of easy money and exciting criminal activity irresistible, but soon Penn begins to realize the consequences of his father’s actions and it starts to have repercussions in his own life. The film features a brooding atmosphere thanks to the efforts of director James Foley, compounded by a great musical score by Patrick Leonard and the phenomenal theme song “Live To Tell” by Madonna.

Berlin Film Festival:  In Competition


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